I can’t promise too many posts here for a couple more weeks BUT THEN I hope to return to our regular schedule (…if there was such a thing. Doesn’t regular schedule feel like an oxymoron sometimes?).
I’ve got some news to share that feels like BIG news. For the first time in a while, I’m yearning for change. I’m looking to switch things up and excited for a little shake up. There has been a significant part of the last year and a half where change hasn’t been welcome. Enough had changed, thankyouverymuch. But now, I think I’m ready.
I’m leaving my job! This Friday will be my last day. I’m leaving a great job that has allowed me to work with people I admire with a mission I care about. I’ve learned so much there but have that gut feeling, nudging me. I know it’s time. I’m leaving comfort, kickin’ that steady paycheck out the door, and kissin’ employer-sponsored health insurance goodbye. AH!
I want to pursue Whistling & Company with more time and space. There are so many exciting things happening here that I can’t ignore the excitement and hope I get from this project. I’ve loved the excitement and community that are undeniably present here. I’ve loved watching orders come in initially solely from friends and family to now, not really knowing the people in the order queue (or anyone even in the state the order is coming from! Here’s looking at you, Montana!).
Since May 1, 2016, we’ve shipped out over 600 whistle necklaces or key chains all across the US. We’ve donated over $2,000 to To Write Love On Her Arms. Things are happening here, folks! I’ve been getting up before work to make whistle necklaces. I’ve been coming home, dropping my bag at the door, and hurrying down to the Whistling Workshop (aka our basement-based hub, complete with lime-green carpet on the stairs) to keep it going! If we can do that with a few hours here and there (and with the crucial, diligent help of many folks volunteering their time and care to spread the word), JUST IMAGINE WHAT 15-20 HOURS A WEEK will do! Y’all. This is big! And I think it’s just the beginning!
To answer a few questions:
Are you scared? Depends on the minute you ask me. But if I’ve learned anything in this last year and a half, it’s that fear can either hold us back or propel us forward. Fear can be the reason to do something. Fear can also be the reason to not do something. I’ve learned to respect fear but I won’t let it dictate my life. Some days I do that better than others. Fear is healthy and has great purpose. But fear should be weighed and considered. So to answer the question: Yep, I’m a little nervous but I don’t let that cloud the feelings of excitement, relief and joy.
With all this excitement, are you still “grieving”? You bet. Through all these big decisions being made in the last few weeks, I’ve been so grateful for the people in my life that have stood by me as I’ve been making these decisions. So, so grateful. But no one has advised me in the way my mom would. It’s no fault of their own, they just aren’t my mom. I miss her all the time. I’ve learned grief is different for us all. Sometimes my grief shows up at weird times (like when this Publix commercial comes on). Sometimes my grief is underlying a laugh. In all kinds of ways, I think I’ll be grieving the rest of my life. My grief reminds me that my life is incomplete, that I’m missing someone important, and that I’m doing my best with the pieces left. Before my mom died, I never knew the depth of how joy and sadness are often so intermingled.
What are you going to do with the rest of your time? I’m really excited to be working two part-time jobs. One is at a yoga studio near my house. I’ll be working the front desk, checking people in for classes, cleaning up after classes, doing laundry, and saying “namaste” a lot. The second is joining a former colleague (who I adore!) for a non-profit contract job. Each job is about 15 hours a week, leaving plenty of time for Whistling and Company to have real space in my life!
What’s next for Whistling and Company? We have a lot of little ideas baking right now. There’s an idea for a short book and an idea for a longer book. There’s an idea for an album — yes, like a real album! Think of the most hopeful songs all in one place. We have ideas of new products and ways to incorporate giving back within this organization. We dream of this being a community that meets face-to-face rather than just online. We have dreams, we sure do.
Practically, though, goal number one is to stock up on inventory. When Taylor Swift posts a picture of her and all her #squad friends wearing Whistling and Company necklaces, I want to be ready.
I also know that the entrepreneurial way seems to be hustle, hustle, hustle. You meet, you greet, you say all the right things, meet more people, work late, work early, stay caffeinated, and manage to run a half marathon each day. Not this girl. I’m all in for hard work but I’m looking forward to a little rest. The last few months have been great and exciting but if I’m being honest, I’m tired. I’m looking forward to learning how to take care of myself while all this is happening. I’ll probably sleep in the first few weeks. I’ll try to have a few slow mornings with books, coffee, and a note pad. I’ll blog more.
But once I’ve rested, ya’ll, I’m ready to run.
This is an exciting, scary, and changing time. I really don’t have the words to say how grateful I am that you all are apart of this.